Saturday, March 17, 2018

Upslope Coffee Brown Ale

Upslope's Coffee Brown Ale is the latest in their Tap Room Series, featuring Ozo Mocha Java coffee. 6.7% alcohol. 45 IBU. Pounder can.

Lots of coffee in the aroma with a chocolate background. Big rich coffee flavors dominate the start. Some cocoa power and a very nice roast come next.

The coffee has a bitter, acrid aspect, not pleasant. Some creamy, chocolaty sweetness does try to balance that but comes up short. Was OK, didn't like the edge from the coffee.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Hop Shovel IPA

Bear Republic Hop Shovel IPA recently hit my local liquor store shelves. Their Racer 5 IPA has always been a favorite so I decided to check this out. There's a story about the name of the beer which ends with "enjoy a shovel's worth!" 7.5% alcohol.

Citrus and pine aroma, and you can work for a little tropical mango.  Pine flavors come first, spicy with plenty of hoppy dankness. Fruity sweet behind the scenes, orange and mango. Leans nicely bitter. Different.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Genesee Brew House Dark Chocolate Scotch Ale

Yeah I know it's kind of a crappy photo. Sorry.
Genesee Brew House Dark Chocolate Scotch Ale. 7.5% alcohol

Amazing aroma full of dark chocolate. Like "make-out" level aroma!

Flavors come with some chocolate but a little more rich caramel and an alcohol kick. On the sweeter side which could have used a little more balance, but not bad!

Monday, March 12, 2018

4Front IPA

Today I'm checking out the fairly new (at least to Florida) Victory Brewing 4 Front IPA. 5.5% alcohol.

Fruity, tangerine citrus aroma. Similar flavors full or oranges and tangerines, bright with a nice little spicy and prickly carbonation bite. Good bitterness. Easy drinker, tasty and refreshing.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Sierra Nevada Fresh Hop Double IPA

Sierra Nevada's Fresh Hop Double IPA is part of their Fresh Hop Variety Pack. The brewery website says this beer is a showcase for field-fresh Simcoe hops. 8.0% alcohol.

Very hoppy aroma full of grapefruit with a caramel backdrop. Super fresh! Hoppy, lots of grapefruit and citrus, a bit spicy. Not overly bitter (like a much softer Torpedo) with a nice caramel backbone.

Balanced and refined with a nice body. Lingering bitterness. Good but Sierra Nevada sets the bar as expert IPA brewers, and I like a lot of their other work better. That mixed 12 pack though is money and value!

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Quat Seasonal Fruit Ale

Tampa Bay Brewing's Quat is their seasonal fruit ale brewed with locally-grown Kumquats. Nicely decorated pounder can with a little story to set your expectations. "Pairs well with the Florida lifestyle."

Tangy, very kumquatty aroma. Kumquat and orange tanginess to start. A little acidic, sour, sharp. Then plenty of citrus show up to the party to take a little of that edge off.

Kumquats have a very distinct flavor, lightly bitter, fruity sour, refreshing. I'm not sure kumquats are exactly my thing, but for sure you should check out this beer!

Friday, March 9, 2018

Trickster IPA

Today I'm checking out Green Man's Trickster IPA. This beer is brewed with Simcoe, Mosaic and El Dorado hops. 76 IBU. 7% alcohol. Pounder can.

Bright lemony citrus aroma. Sharp candied lemon peel flavors move to softer fruity flavors. Hints of apple and tangerine, lots of orange citrus. Lightly spicy, grassy, touch of pine, nicely bitter.

I liked it a lot, though while I'll cede "hints" of tropical fruits, I'm not sure this is a "tropical IPA disturbance." I do suppose citrus also equals tropics, but I was expecting mangoes and peaches and pineapples in my face.

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Chocolatte Porter

Chocolatte Porter sounds delicious, right? Yeah! And I don't know who Evans Brewing has doing their label art, but this bomber label is awesome! Workers are diligently mining coffee and chocolate, presumably for this beer. 6.8% alcohol. 15.5 IBU.

Chocolate and coffee aroma. Similar flavors, chocolate and cocoa with a little roast and just a touch of coffee. On the flattish and sweet side, though the texture is creamy and nice.

Definitely wanted more roast or bitterness to take the sweet edge off. And a few bubbles. Check it out if and let me know what you think. It seems a few modifications could greatly improve this beer!

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Hopadillo IPA

Cuidado! Karbach Brewing's Hopadillo IPA is first up today! The can tells a story of the scary Hopadillo, while suggesting you remain calm.

Nice sweet orange marmalade and caramel aroma. Sweet fruity orange and caramel flavors come first but are hit with a strong dose of citrus and pine hoppy bitterness. Fruity and bitter linger.

Definitely leans bitter though I'm not sure about "a flavor as defiant as the Hopadillo himself, packed with bracing bitterness." It was tasty though!

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

BOMP Florida Weisse

BOMP is Coppertail's newest entry in their Florida Weisse Series. According to Coppertail's periodic table of ingredients, BOMP is brewed with Blood Orange, Mango and Passionfruit. The label shows two squirrel-like creatures drinking a little too much. Enjoy By 03/18/18 Drink 02/10/18 the first day I saw it for sale. Not sure why it was almost 5 months old at that point. 3.5% alcohol.

Salty and generic fruity aroma, not that powerful. Tart to start, grabbed the sides of my neck. Nicely sharp and acidic. Definitely fruity, with orange taking a leading role with perhaps a dash of passionfruit into the finish.

Refreshing, tasty. I liked previous Florida Weisse Series entries a little better though because the fruity aspects were more distinct. Check it out!

Monday, March 5, 2018

Exalted IPA

Today I'm checking out Stone Exalted IPA. When Stone brews an IPA, it's for sure worth checking out! This beer is part of their Hop Worship Series, featuring Citra and Loral hops. "Glory be to those who imbibe it in its freshest form and faithfully worship thy Hop in the beauty of blissful bitterness." 7% alcohol. Canned 02/03/18 Drink 02/18/18

Floral, fruity aroma. Fruity flavors to start as well followed by a little pine and spiciness. Floral and a little grassy, nicely bitter through the finish. Some lemon zest also adds some additional bitter interest.

Not bad. I'll definitely be interested in checking out others in the series.

Sunday, March 4, 2018

2018 Experimental India Pale Ale

Upslope Brewing recently introduced 2018 Experimental India Pale Ale to their year-round core lineup. Each year, the "experiment" will change with different hop combinations being used. 2018 includes Denali, Azacca, Galaxy and Vic Secret Hops. 7.0% alcohol

Big fruity aroma full of apricots and pineapple, tropical and sweet. Similar fruity sweet peach, apricot and pineapple explode in your mouth. Very juicy and tropical. A terrific bitter balance follows and a nice tanginess comes in the finish and lingers until your next sip.

Very enjoyable!

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Hanalei Island IPA

Kona Brewing sent me a bottle of their Hanalei Island IPA, so duh I'm gonna drink it! This is a new beer to the continental USA for roughly a year, an IPA brewed with passionfruit, orange and guava. Bottled Nov15'17. Drink in Jan2018. 4.5% alcohol.

Very pleasant, fruity, citrus aroma. Super fruity flavors too, with orange sticking out and passionfruit taking a little spin. On the sweet side to start but there is a great bitter balance. A little thin but super refreshing. Simple easy drinker. In a world of awesome IPAs, even with the Hawaiian fruity twist, well, you know...

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Shock Top Ruby Fresh Grapefruit

Shock Top Ruby Fresh Grapefruit? Yeah, what the hell!?!?! After twisting off the cap, I poured this into my "Bud Drinking Glass." So this is a Belgian-style wheat ale brewed with citrus peels and coriander and other natural grapefruit and orange flavors. 5.2% alcohol.

Citrus rind, grapefruit aroma on top of a wheaty base. Tangy orange flavors come first, plenty of citrus rind. Coriander is noticeable. Not really sure about any grapefruit, shock topping considering the name of the beer!

The texture is kind of dirty, thick, grainy. And an underlying unpleasant flavor persists. PASS!!!!

Friday, February 9, 2018

Flora Obscura Dry-Hopped Porter

Boulevard Brewing recently debuted a new seasonal: Flora Obscura Dry-Hopped Porter. This is a robust porter dry hopped with a variety of hops to give it a bright, tropical aroma and flavor. Sounds like an awesome experiment! 5.8% alcohol. 50 IBU. Enjoy By 11JUL2018. Drink 27JAN2018.

Beautiful tropical fruity aroma, so much like an awesome IPA I could hardly believe it. Didn't really smell anything "Porter."

Fruity sweet tropical flavors come first too. But as you take a few sips, a roasty-choco, burnt caramel flavor profile eases into the picture. Some coffee and light smokiness into the finish too.

It really is amazing how the two different parts of this beer are so far apart yet complement each other so well! An awesome creamy texture, night and day flavor contrasts feeding off the other. I liked this beer a lot!

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Jersey Juice IPA

Flying Fish Jersey Juice IPA recently hit my local Miami liquor stores. The story on the back of the can talks of using cryogenic hop lupulin concentrate to create a hoppy character twice as intense. The story further sets your expectations for huge citrus, mango and tropical fruity flavors... um, why is this "Jersey Juice" then? Perhaps just because of where it's brewed?

I'm pretty sure Jersey is known for apples, blueberries, cranberries and peaches. Using or having hops that mimicked those flavors would really make this Jersey Juice. Anyway, the can does invite you to the tasting room, so maybe I'll discuss my suggestions in person! 6% alcohol. 33 IBU.

Bright tangerines, light piney aroma. Super rich hoppy flavors, intense. Lots of citrus, hints of tropical mango and tangerine. A little spicy, resinous pine builds with each sip. Dank but different. I liked it! Check it out!

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Approachable Bastard Session IPA

Evans Brewing has beer crafting beers in Orange County (CA) since 1994. Today I'm checking out their Approachable Bastard Session IPA. The label on the bomber has a hop-head (literally has a hop for a head) about to enter a beer festival, but perhaps all the German Fest celebrations are keeping him out?

Anyway, the label art on this and a few others from the brewery are spectacular, and I'll try to arrange a contest to giveaway some signed labels. 4.8% alcohol. 52 IBU.

Bright orange, lightly spicy aroma. Orange citrus and hints of tropical flavors come first. Tangy and lightly sweet to start with a distinct spicy and piney balance.

Good flavors, approachable. NOT so much any kind of bastard but for sure check it out!

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Kold Schauer

Today I'm checking out Kold Schauer, a Kolsch-style beer brewed by Sixpoint Brewery. The tall can doesn't tell the full story about the special Huell Melon Hops they brew the beer with, so be sure to click that link. But the can does tell me to expect "an icy cold torrent of pure suds." 4.9% alcohol. 23 IBU. "ALWAYS SCHAUER WITH A FRIEND."

Grainy aroma, some honey and nondescript fruitiness. Fruity flavors come first, with honeydew melon flavors leading the way, very noticeable. Grainy, a little spicy, sourdough bread and crackers.

There is a sharp little prickly thing going on too, hitting the palate over and over. Background sweet balance. Was a decent beer, not sure about the "icy cold torrent."

Monday, February 5, 2018

Hop Bullet Double IPA

Does Sierra Nevada ever stop creating new IPAs or methods to innovate on a style in which they dominate? I guess not! Hop Bullet Double IPA was on the local liquor store shelves today, so I grabbed a bottle.

Hop Bullet was brewed with a double-barreled blast of Magnum hops and lupulin dust! That's pure hoppy concentration! Let's see! 8.0% alcohol. A spring seasonal, for now.

Fruity orange aroma, pretty tame and not so big. Whoa! Flavors are super intense. Super juicy and fruity to start. Tropical, orange, mango, pineapple. But those sweeter flavors have a grassy, spicy, bitter answer with some citrus and pine showing too.

Excellent flavors, well balanced leaning bitter. Terrific!

Sunday, February 4, 2018

C Porter


LauderAle started canning and locally distributing their C Porter (coconut porter) recently. Why wouldn't they, considering C Porter's GOLD Medal win at GABF 2017 in the Field Beer category (David Minsky is my favorite, too). Oh, and that win came over their neighbor Funky Buddha's No Crusts, surely an additional super-satisfying caveat! Two Ft. Lauderdale breweries take gold and silver in one category at GABF? Damn straight!

So I tasted the beer over at my local liquor store a few weeks ago. The brewery rep told me they were canning more that day, so to look for it in-store soon. And sure enough, it was.

She also told me the GABF story. Gold medal winners are given a heads-up on wins though not told what category. Head Brewer Mike White caught a last-second flight to Denver to accept, as the brewery was not pouring for the event. Huge win and accomplishment. Congratulations!

I grabbed a can today. There's a story to set your expectations. My particular favorite part is hoping for "a Mounds bar in a glass." 6.5% alcohol. 23 IBU.

Milk chocolate sweet aroma, hint of coconut, not huge but nice and very inviting. Chocolate and caramel flavors show first with plenty of coconut coming next. Sweet to start, creamy and milky texture.

A little roast and faint char add some sweet relief, add balance. Excellent flavors and texture. Candy bar for the win! Medium body, leans sweet but for sure balanced. Check it out! (Don't forget this brewery is so close to FLL that any person on a layover can grab a few beers rather than deal with airport BS!)

Saturday, February 3, 2018


Blue Point Brewing created a Golden Ale using their dry hop Gold Medalist: Olympic Hops. OH LIMB PICK BEER comes in a pounder can with a gold label, and the brewery suggests you follow the lead of their brewers, taking home the gold while skipping the gym. Supposedly the beer was brewed with gold flakes but I didn't see any (I'll let you know if I see any later.) 5.3% alcohol. Canned On 01 12 2018.

Grainy, lightly fruity aroma with some hops, very pleasant. Fruity apple, light mango flavors to start, just barely on the sweet side. But a nice, hoppy bitterness follows, more fruitiness, super flavorful.

The flavors are accompanied by some prickly, sharp hits to the palate. Clean, refreshing, nice flavors! I gave you a few days to pick up some GOLD and root on the American Olympians!

Friday, January 26, 2018

Fat Tire Belgian White Special Release

New Belgium Fat Tire Belgian White Special Release. Yeah, I said it, New Belgium did a variation on their classic Fat Tire beer, brewing it with Seville orange peel and coriander. The bike on this label has a basket full of tomatoes, wonder where it's heading? 5.2% alcohol.

Tangy and spicy aroma, plenty of orange. Chewy texture. Tangy and herbal flavors, that distinct New Belgium yeast right at the beginning. Spicy coriander builds within a few sips. Orange citrus it bright and a nice balance for the texture. Was OK.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Gingy Imperial Porter

Tampa Bay Brewing's Gingy Imperial Porter is on deck! This is their (Florida) Winter Beer Experience in a 16 oz. can. "Gingy John" is pictured on the can. There is a story to set your expectations on this 9.0% alcohol beer, see below.

Lots of cinnamon and ginger and cocoa for an aroma, I suppose "greeting the season with joy and merriment." Subtle start to the flavors, soft cocoa, touch of caramel. Spicy ginger arrives next in full force, gives a little of that ginger burn.

Not bad but wanted more porter-like flavors, chocolate, caramel, roast, versus this spice-driven, ginger-dominated interpretation. Not bad.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Hazy Little Thing IPA

I saw a boxed six pack of Sierra Nevada Hazy Little Thing IPA a few weeks ago at my local liquor store. Instead of breaking out one beer, which I usually do, I took the whole box home. Duh, this is Sierra Nevada!

As the story goes, the brewery decided after tasting this beer directly from the tanks, that it needed nothing more. So they canned it straight from the tanks on 12/05/17. Drink 01/06/18. 6.7% alcohol.

Fruity orange aroma, lightly tropical. Orange and lemon citrus flavors come first. While candied sweetness starts, it is met with some spicy, grassy citrus rind and bite. Juicy, nicely balanced.

Honestly, while the flavor was very nice, it seemed a little "Plain Jane," especially for this brewery. "Unfiltered Hop Bomb"???  --->>> NO WAY!!! Let me know what you think.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Hop Revolver IPA: Simcoe

Stone Brewing has a Rotating Single-Hop Series called Hop Revolver. I found their Simcoe Hop version in a mixed 12 pack a few months ago. Bottled 10/??/17. Drink 11/19/17. 7.7% alcohol.

Fruity aroma, bright, tropical orange and pineapple. Beautiful flavors full of juicy tangerines and pineapples. Spicy, good bitterness, just enough, perfect. Nicely carbonated, super fresh. Excellent beer!